“But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold. For I have stayed on God’s paths; I have followed his ways and not turned aside.” — Job 23:10-11
God allows trials and suffering in our lives to prove our faith. We are either going to believe in Him or we’re not. We are going to trust what God says in His word or we won’t. We will either have faith that He knows what He is doing or remain in our unbelief. God will do His best not to leave us in any of those scenarios. He never promised us total perfection, prosperity, or freedom from the wiles of the devil in this life—that’s in the life to come. This life is our spiritual “boot camp.” It’s in this life that we acquire the knowledge of how to use the weapons of our spiritual warfare that He has given us, as we learn to resist the devil and the temptations he brings (2 Corinthians 10:4; James 4:7). But why? For what purpose?
In his pure gold analogy (1 Peter 1:7), Peter says that our faith “is far more precious than mere gold.” No doubt you’ve heard how pure gold is obtained from the nuggets taken from the earth. The nugget is heated to a temperature of up to one thousand degrees or more, so that the impurities that were mined with the gold will fall off or burn up. What remains will be the purest of gold possible. God wants our faith to be like that—better than a 1 ounce Golden Eagle, which by law is 91.6% pure gold. He wants our faith to be as close to 100% pure as possible in this life.
The reason? Now this will really excite you. It’s for “praise, and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed.” But not from us to Him—but from Jesus to us! That’s when our Lord will say to us, “Well done good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:23). That’s when He will commend us to His Father, present us with our glorious bodies and honor our faithfulness in this life.
I remember back in the dark ages, when I was a young high school quarterback. We were playing against a tough team from West Palm Beach, Florida. They had a great running back by the name of Burt Reynolds who scored three touchdowns against us in the first half. That’s right, that same Burt Reynolds, who went on to become a Hollywood movie legend! We were losing 19-7 well into the fourth quarter, until we scored two touchdowns, the last one as the game ended, and we won 21-19!
I’ll never forget the hugs and praises that our coach, my teammates and especially my dad gave me after the game. I felt so exalted, loved and appreciated. Every time I read this verse I think back on that time in my life—knowing that as delightful as that memory is, God’s praises, glory and honor will be a million times better than a last minute win of a football game. — Maranatha!
“God is good all the time. All the time God is good!”